You know those days where you wake up and realize how old you are already? Then you start panicking a little?
At the time of writing, I’m 26. It feels like just yesterday I was discussing how to safely make hydrogen (using Drano and aluminum foil) in my backyard with my high-school science teacher. It feels like just yesterday I rode a unicycle over 600 KM in less than 10 days. A sublime-stunt, in order to get a chance to meet one of my biggest inspirations). April 2017, about a year ago, I woke up and remember thinking “Oh shit”. Seriously, does it bother you as much as it does me? Where exactly does the time go? Do you ever wonder: “If I die tomorrow, have I done enough?”
These big questions can send us spinning into a slightly terrifying existential crisis. I was fortunate to have a very supportive friend in my life during my quarter-life crisis. She invited me to read a book called 4-Hour Body. Through its pages, I got to know the author, Tim Ferriss. I grew very fond of him. Finishing that led me to reading his first book, one that would help me start to change everything: 4-Hour Workweek. (4HW)
How much time do I spend pooping? Cooking? Grocery shopping? Working-out?
I had never really considered these before. How much time I was expending, and where? Because of the nature of my upbringing and career path, I had spent the majority of my life flowing between interests. Whatever felt right, I did it. After finishing 4HW, the value of time was made explicitly clear for me.
At one point, Tim refers to what Peter Drucker once said: “What gets measured gets managed.” This little 5-word quote, has been my go-to anytime I’m feeling overwhelmed. Especially when I’m feeling taken-over by thoughts like: “I’m not accomplishing enough” (which is fairly frequently). While reading 4HW, I was simultaneously enrolled in my friend Randy Thomas’ Actor Advantage Program. In it, he assigns a piece of homework: Track your daily activities for 7 days straight.
I used this Time Meter App on my phone to track my day-to-day activities. Because I’m an over-achiever, I did it for 2 weeks. The results made me equally happy and slightly annoyed. It turns out, I was spending 65% of my time on tasks and activities that related to the category of “health”. For instance: Buying groceries, working out, cooking, and the bathroom (I poop frequently) were my main time-consuming culprits. At least they were at that point in my life.
I prioritize my health, so what? Is that really so bad?
Well that brings us to the other part of this: What do I want? I highly recommend checking out Ferriss’ Ted Talk on fear setting. Which he says, is a great thing to do, before setting goals. The idea, in short, is this: Define the worst possible potential scenarios that could come up, should you attempt to do that which you really want to do. Then list the ways you could prevent & resolve these. In doing this, you’re more likely to set goals, uninhibited by illogical, fear-based choices. The fears and doubts may still be present, but now they are conquerable. Which is the growth of courage.
“Courage is what you will experience and what you will grow, when the doubt is there but you do it anyway.” -Elliott Hulse
When I finished my fear-setting, and my goal-setting (or as Ferriss calls it Dreamlining) it turns out I didn’t want to be a billionaire after-all. My ultimate, financially-liberated lifestyle isn’t that expensive at all. A lot of my goals were health related. For example, I want to be able to do the splits & full planche. So it was rewarding to look at where my time was going, and seeing congruity.
However, most of my goals were experience-based, as opposed to material. As an illustration, I really want to train with a guy named Ido Portal, and explore South Asia on a motorcycle. I want to open a multidisciplinary training & movement center for youth. These will only happen, if I find a way to achieve my target total monthly income.
All in all, the above thoughts helped me tremendously to begin making powerful changes in my life.
I’m not yet where I’d like to be. However, in less than a year, I’m a lot closer than I have been for the past 10. That feels good to write. Additionally, the wolf hasn’t been at the door. (Though, he has held me by the ears a couple of times, or whatever.) If you’re at all feeling a little out-of-place. Or maybe stuck on where to begin. Here are a list of 3 resources and 3 questions that I invite you to begin with:
- What does my dream lifestyle look like? (Describe it in as much detail as possible. i.e What color is the yacht? Do you want to fly first-class to that dream destination? Etc.)
- On a scale of 1 – 100: How close are you to that dream today? (1 = Dead in a ditch. 100 = Made it!)
- What could you do today, to gain .25 of a point on your answer from question 2?
I’m in the process of making a lot of changes to this blog’s home. For now, the best way to give me your thoughts, comments, share your successes and feedback is by emailing me: firstname.lastname@example.org
I read everything that shows up there, and do my best to reply personally to each correspondence.
You can check out one of my most popular blog posts to date, here.